The broad objectives of the program are to assess the quality of water and adjacent ecosystems in the Port Curtis region to determine trends over time. The program is designed to identify any potential areas for concern without assigning direct causality. The key objectives of the program are to:
increase community awareness, education and understanding of local water quality and water quality management
quantify concentrations of various indicators within the Port Curtis region to establish a baseline, and continually monitor the condition of the region
engage and involve stakeholders to adopt adaptive management practices, if required
collect and collate high-quality data from sites within the Port Curtis region for Port Curtis Integrated Monitoring Program members and the Port Curtis Ecosystem Health Report Card.
PCIMP consist of representatives from Gladstone industry, government (both local and state), research institutions and other stakeholders.
List of indicators monitored
Specific electrical conductivity
Light attenuation (Kd or euphotic depth)
Total suspended solids
Oxidation reduction potential
Totals (17 metals)
Oyster accumulation (17 metals)
water & oyster shell Fluoride
Biological indicators with water column (NB carried out until 2011 and are currently under review):
Macroalgal abundance and diversity on settlement plates
Invertebrate abundance and diversity on settlement plates
Intertidal sediments (NB carried out until 2011 and are currently under review):
Sediment particle size
Polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (19)
Total organic carbon
Mangroves (NB carried out until 2011 and are currently under review):
Projective foliage cover
Seedling density and biomass
Tree density and biomass
Crab hole density
Mangrove root metal concentration
Intertidal invertebrates (NB carried out until 2011 and are currently under review):
Amphipod distribution and abundance
Seagrass is currently being monitored at a high frequency by Gladstone Ports Corporation Ltd to meet the approval conditions required of the Western Basin Dredging & Disposal Project. Monitoring will revert back to PCIMP following the completion of the project.
Scale of program
Port Curtis (port-wide)
Brief description of sampling locations
54 water sites are used to assess the water quality of Port Curtis. The sites range from the Narrows in the north to Rodds Bay in the south. The intertidal monitoring component of PCIMP was conducted over 62 sites across the harbour until 2011. The scope of this part of the program is currently under review. PCIMP also measures the health of seagrass meadows in Port Curtis.
Frequency of monitoring
The water quality component of PCIMP is conducted quarterly (annually until 2011). The intertidal monitoring component was carried out every 3 years until 2011, this is currently under review. Additional monitoring is undertaken on an as needs basis.